Celebrate the Harvest at Olympic Peninsula Wineries

patch o´ pumpkins

Celebrate the fall harvest with Washington State Wines.

Pull your favorite wine glass out of the cupboard and bring it with you to the 2010 Harvest Olympic Peninsula Winery Tour. Celebrate the fall harvest with Washington State Wines and Ciders and a sampling of fresh, delicious, food. Participants will be able to sample new releases and try old favorites.

For an added bit of fun, we’re adding a scavenger hunt this year. At each of the seven participating Washington State wineries and ciders you’ll be given a clue – find the item it describes and get a sticker on your card. If you find all the items and have the stickers to prove it, you’ll have a chance at wining a culinary gift basket.

Below are a few Harvest Festival details for each Olympic Peninsula winery / cidery.


Wine Tour & Poker Run Adds to Crab Festival Fun

The Olympic Peninsula Wineries and Seven Cedars Casino invite you to compete for the best five-card hand and a prize wine and poker-themed gift basket during the second annual self-guided Tour of Wineries & Poker Run. The event will coincide with Port Angeles’ celebrated Dungeness Crab & Seafood Festival, on Saturday, Oct. 10 and Sunday, Oct. 11 from 11 a.m. – 5 p.m.

New this year, FairWinds Winery and Sorensen Cellars, both located in Port Townsend, will offer a wild card to help players complete their hand. Anyone age 21 and over is welcome to participate in the Run.

How the Tour of Wineries and Poker Run Works

Begin the run at any of the North Olympic Peninsula’s six artisan wineries located in Port Townsend and Port Angeles; at Seven Cedars Casino in Sequim: or at the Crab Festival’s Wine Garden located on Port Angeles City Pier. Enjoy award-winning locally made wine and pick-up an official Poker Run Card, complete with instructions and a map.

Each winery a player visits, in addition to Seven Cedars Casino and the Crab Fest Garden, offers the opportunity to draw a card and have the Poker Run card stamped. A visit to all eight locations provides eight opportunities to draw for the best potential poker hand — but the number of stops a player makes is completely up to him/her. A minimum of five stops required for validation.

Each venue will have an official depository for completed cards, and will accept cards until close. The wineries will be open from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday, and the Crab Festival Wine Garden from 10 a.m. – 8:30 p.m. on Saturday and from 10 a.m.to 5:00 p.m. on Sunday. Seven Cedars Casino opens at 10 a.m. every day, and will offer the last chance to drop-off completed Poker Run cards at 7 p.m. on Sunday.

At the end of the weekend, all Poker Run cards will be gathered and transferred to the casino where the winning hand will be determined. The winner will be notified by phone and email.

The Poker Run is free of charge. Wine tasting will be available at all six Olympic Peninsula Wineries throughout the day, and customary tasting fees will apply. Stop by the wine garden on City Pier near Crab Central and sample wines from all six wineries in a single location. Seven Cedars Casino offers evening entertainment including live music.

For further information, visit www.olympicpeninsulawineries.org or call 800-785-5495.

Wine Tour & Poker Run Line-Up:

FairWinds Winery, Port Townsend
Stop by and pick up your wild card! Hang around and watch live poker playing or join in on a hand or two – you just might win! See how the wine making process takes place with a winery tour, and sample our own FairWinds Farm tasty potato appetizers. Taste our new release Fireweed Mead as well as six other award-winning wines. www.fairwindswinery.com, 360.385.6899.

Sorensen Cellars, Port Townsend
Visitors can sample the 2007 Viognier, 2008 Townsend Bay Pinot Gris, 2007 Sangiovese, 2006 Cabernet Franc, 2004 Merlot, and 2005 Syrah accompanied by light appetizers. www.sorensencellars.com, 360.379.6416.

Olympic Cellars, Port Angeles
Are you a gambler or just feeling lucky? Guests at Olympic Cellars can play to “beat” the house “discount.” Most wines will be open for tasting including an expanded reserve list. Taste the grapes off our vines (still too young for wine), ring the Harvest Bell, and pose for the perfect photo opportunity with our new Vineyard Angel by metal artists John and Cynthia Dash.
www.olympiccellars.com, 360.452.0160.

Black Diamond Winery, Port Angeles
Come and sample our fruit and grape wines, including cranberry, strawberry-rhubarb, raspberry, Syrah and Ridge White. www.blackdiamondwinery.com, 360.457.0748.

Camaraderie Cellars, Port Angeles
Featuring our newly released 2007 Tempranillo and a number of other great red wines complemented by “poker party snacks.” Roll the dice at the cash register to determine your purchase discount! www.camaraderiecellars.com, 360.417.3564.

Harbinger Winery, Port Angeles
Sample our newly released 2007 El Jefé Spanish blend and 2008 Blackberry Bliss, enjoy complementary snacks, and take a harvest tour! On Saturday,
Oct. 10 Brew Master Steve Corcoran will be on hand from Noon to 4 p.m. to pour his latest selection of handcrafted beer. www.harbingerwinery.com, 360.452.4262.

Hood Canal Bridge Set to Reopen Ahead of Schedule!

Work that began on May 1 to replace the east half of the Hood Canal Bridge and the east and west trusses may be completed more than a week ahead of schedule, according to the Washington State Dept. of Transportation website, http://www.wsdot.wa.gov/regions/Olympic/.

The overall project is currently estimated to be 97 percent complete, despite some unseasonably foul weather that added 3 days to the 6-week contract timeline. Drawspan testing is scheduled for Wednesday, June 3.

The Olympic Peninsula Wineries invite you to celebrate the reopening of the bridge with a scenic self-guided tour of our seven tasting rooms, located in the cities of Port Townsend, Sequim and Port Angeles. While you’re here, be sure to take a drive through downtown Port Angeles and see the transformation that has been in progress during the bridge closure. It’s part of an all-community volunteer effort dubbed, “Our Community at Work: Painting Downtown.” For more information on the project, visit http://www.portangelesdowntown.com/our_community_at_work.php.

Online “Passport” Sales Rise in 2008

Many travelers took advantage of the opportunity to purchase their “Passports” on line before departing on the Olympic Peninsula Wineries’ first International Passport Wine Tour this past weekend.  A quick click via the winery association’s website enables an easy, secure Pay Pal transaction in advance of all wine tours.

Visitors paired wines crafted locally from old world origin grapes with a selection of foods from some of Europe’s most famous wine growing regions. New taste sensations were discovered, including Sorensen Cellars’ Viognier and goat cheese canapes with apricots and almonds, and Olympic Cellars’ Dungeness Red Lemberger Wine and Alsatian Tarte Flambee.A good time was had by all.

The Olympic Peninsula Winerie’s next event will be the Red Wine & Chocolate Tour. This two-weekend event will take place on February 7-8, 2009 and February 14-15-16 (Presidents’ Day Weekend). More information is available at www.olympicpeninsulawineries.org. Get your advance tickets on line now!